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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A New Year's Wish

A New Year's Wish
Author Unknown

At the sound of the tolling midnight bell
a brand new year will begin.
Let's raise our hopes in a confident toast,
to the promise it ushers in.

May your battles be few, your pleasures many,
your wishes and dreams fulfilled.
May your confidence stand in the face of loss
and give you the strength to rebuild.

May peace of heart fill all your days
may serenity grace your soul.
May tranquil moments bless your life
and keep your spirit whole.


Wishing you peace, love and hope—
now and throughout the New Year.  

Bi Polar Bear
Stephen Puibello

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Compassion this Holiday Season and as Many Days as you Can

Happy Holidays

We all read about and many of us know the harmful effects of stigma.  If you know me you know I'm HIV+, if you know me, you know that I'm also disabled with bipolar disorder.  What you may not know is that, "18 million people have a serious mental illness.  A reasonable estimate suggests that about that about 720,000 are LGBT (Reducing Stigma and Discrimination among People who are Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender, March 12, 2008 SAMHSA)," from my website.

Yes I know that I don't have to disclose my mental illness as many of my friends have suggested, they mean well, truly but imagine being HIV+ and being told not to tell anyone, or deciding to come out and being told not to, how would that make you feel.

If you know anyone in our community or not in the LGBT community living with mental illness who are alone show them compassion this holiday season and as often as you can.  Invite them along to see a movie, invite them for lunch, for a hike, a walk or to join you and your partner when you are going out to a party or holding one yourselves.

I thank God every day for keeping me healthy, I thank those of you who call, text, message me on Face book or by email, our conversations keep me from going over the edge, as if I were in silence everyday from lack of social inclusion I would go mad for sure.

I will be with family tomorrow and this holiday a very special gift came from my brother, forgiveness and that he's proud of me and the work I do as a consumer advocate, peer specialist for both HIV+ and Mental Illness.  Thank you brother

But those not with family tomorrow, those who you may know of who are alone reach out to them this holiday season and as many days as you can.  Happy holidays.

"Double Stigma: GLBT People Living With Mental Illness

"Experiences of LGBT People Living with Serious Mental Illnesses: Raising Issues" by Alicia Lucksted PhD

"CDC Gay and Bi-Sexual Mental Health"

"Rainbow Heights Club"

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Resistance Training for Mental Health

Some wait until after both big family and food holidays, Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Well after after the turkey course with all the trimmings out came the ham and candied yams and all the trimmings, just when I opened the button on my jeans out came the lasagna and I was like man I used to be able to woof all these dishes down with out blinking an eye.

After surviving that wonderful meal, thanks Cos you continue to host a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday, one that I look forward to every year.

Well I didn't wait until New Years to start my new years resolution, I took my bike, went to the gym and started two days after.  How many of us have joined a gym as part of their new years resolution.

Joining a gym has so many benefits, lose weight, tone muscle, reduce the risk of a heart attack, but did you know that working with weights, resistance training has benefits for your mental health.

Mental Health benefits from resistance training are improved memory, may lesson depression, less chronic fatigue, improve the quality of your sleep, improve cognition, less anxiety and improved self-esteem.  If you are a mental health consumer going to the gym resistance training benefits many of the symptoms of  bipolar disorder.

"Bipolar disorder can look very different in different people. The symptoms vary widely in their pattern, severity, and frequency. Some people are more prone to either mania or depression, while others alternate equally between the two types of episodes. Some have frequent mood disruptions, while others experience only a few over a lifetime."

There are four types of mood episodes in bipolar disorder: mania, hypomania, depression and mixed episodes.  Each type of bipolar disorder mood episode has a unique set of symptoms."(source: Help Guide)

Resistance Training Improves Mental Health

Strong Brain

CDC; Why Strength Training

The Psychological Aspects of Resistance Training